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Is skipping quite a few book bands normal?

(16 Posts)
TormundGiantsbabe Wed 11-May-16 21:21:49

Is this usual? I'm worried I'm coming across as pushy and now I'm paranoid they're just pandering to me!

Ds started year 1 on red, after a couple of weeks I asked if they could check he was on the right level and they moved him to yellow. In November he moved up to blue, in January he moved to orange, in March he moved to purple, and he's just been moved to lime. Each time the move has happened after I've asked that they check he is on the right level.

He may read in school but the teacher has never written to say so in his reading record so I am assuming that he mostly only reads to me, hence why I ask them to check every time the books become easier for ds to read. But I'm just wondering if skipping book bands so often is usual? Do I look like some kind of tiger mother by asking them to assess his reading?

irvineoneohone Wed 11-May-16 21:41:18

In reception, ds skipped from orange to purple in two weeks, few months in purple then to lime., became free reader in summer term. I didn't ask the teacher. But yr1 teacher made a bit of sarky comment about it.( although she didn't make him go back and read all the levelled books.)
But I have to admit, my ds is a true book worm. He used to read 3 orange book a day at beginning of reception.

ThisIsNotARealAvo Wed 11-May-16 21:46:20

The lower book bands like red and yellow can be zoomed through as the children learn their phonics quite quickly and the more sounds they know the more they can read, so as long as they don't have any problems with understanding and talking about what the have read they should move up quickly. In my class I would expect chn to move into red as soon as they can blend, then quickly through yellow and blue to green and then orange by end of R, some move further but you have to know quite a lot about the world to understand purple or gold so deciding isn't really enough for those stages.

ThisIsNotARealAvo Wed 11-May-16 21:46:56

Decoding not deciding

Singlemum1985 Wed 11-May-16 21:59:46

Oh to have a teacher who listens to the parent! I wouldn't knock it, our teacher will not move our DS until she has exhausted every available book and comprehension on each band. He's in year one and currently on Purple Bug Club (Online) books (which has been one hell of a fight). They finally conceded and declared him a free reader of hard copy books so he's free to choose but they still won't let him jump. This is despite (even with video evidence) that he was able to read Gold Band in Reception! I would envy a teacher like yours 😀

Bragadocia Wed 11-May-16 22:02:41

Sounds very similar to DS' school - they don't read with most of the children in his Y1 class at all; they say they are too busy to do so. About once a term, (seems to fall a few days before parents evening!) the teacher 'assesses' the children, and moves them up a couple of stages.

My preference would be for the children to be read with at school on a more regular basis, and make more frequent moves, rather than languish on the same level for too long - we were re-reading the orange books in the winter term, as we'd gone through all of them, and our requests for assessment were being ignored. Then DS was straight up to gold, omitting purple and turquoise entirely. Now on white.

TormundGiantsbabe Wed 11-May-16 22:09:13

I remember in reception ds took ages to begin to blend. I felt like we would be stuck on red forever! Then once he started doing it there was just no stopping him.

We had a go with his new lime book tonight, he can deal with the majority of words fine (when he remembers to slow down over the longer ones anyway!), but I agree that the knowledge of "the world" required does seem much greater so that will challenge him.

Doolittle1 Thu 12-May-16 11:17:51

When they are free readers I would love to know how the school deals with them. Are there certain shelves they can choose the books from, are they just given them or can they bring their own books in?

Micah Thu 12-May-16 11:25:17

I honestly never worried about this. I have no idea what the levels or bands are even.

The school reading books were mostly give a cursory glance so I could sign the record, we all hated biff and kipper. We just got on reading the books they have at home.

Unless you have no access to books at home, just pick and choose from your own, or the library.

irvineoneohone Thu 12-May-16 11:56:58

Doolittle1, at my ds's school, free reader doesn't really mean anything. In KS1, it just means past lime. But at my ds's school, book level is just a official level, as the school only asks children to read every night, not necessarily school book, but any book of their choice. So seems like it's only used to group the children to similar levels at school work. There are higher levels in KS2, but still, children are allowed to read any book. My ds used to read school books in reception, but since YR1, he only read library books and his own books.

Ginmummy1 Thu 12-May-16 12:29:35

I expect that going through the bands this quickly may be fairly uncommon, but that's not to say it's wrong - it sounds like your DS is doing very well.

How did you ask the teacher to check your DS's reading level? Did you write it in his reading record? Did the teacher write a reply? Have you asked your DS what the teacher said when he was first given a book at the next level?

My DD (in Reception) has sometimes been moved up a level after I've written a comment in her reading record that suggests she's romped through a book or read something substantial at home. Twice I've written a response in the reading record after the teacher has moved her up, just asking whether the teacher feels she's ready for the new level, and trying to make it clear that I'm not pushing her up and that we'll happily trust the teacher's decision on the level. Each time the teacher has written a reassuring response. This method of communication seems to be working ok for us.

However, I don't know how often the teacher would check the reading record in Y1. Maybe pose any comments as questions to try to get a written response from the teacher?

TormundGiantsbabe Thu 12-May-16 12:34:52

My comments in his reading record are worded along the lines of "ds has been doing really well lately, please could you just check he's still on the right level?" The response is then "following reading assessment, ds has been moved to x level".

Ds loves biff, chip and kipper, he can't get enough of them. grin I don't mind those, but I don't like the project x books.

Biffchipandbloodykipper Thu 12-May-16 23:34:37

This sounds like I have wandered into an alternative universe. Despite my ds starting school able to blend and knowing most of his sight words, we are still being forced through every single red stage book despite our protests that he is not learning anything and could have read these before he started school. I am beginning to wonder if I am completely delusional!

PrincessHairyMclary Thu 12-May-16 23:44:34

Once they become Free readers at DDs primary school they move onto accelerated readers which we also use at the high school I work at.

Essentially another type of reading scheme, they are given a level of books they can choose from which correlates to their reading age and also the books contents and then when they have read them they take a short quiz on the computer to test their comprehension and then a new level might be given out. For example Diary of a wimpy kid and Roald Dahl stories are around 3.5 and Harry Potter/ Hunger Games etc are an 8.

PrincessHairyMclary Thu 12-May-16 23:49:43

Also my 6 year old DD almost always moved up a level or two when I asked for her reading to be assessed only on one occasion has the teacher said She'd like her to practise a particular stage a little longer. She reads to an adult every week but only a page or so and group reading too.

She's currently on white and quite happy to stick there. I try to keep extra school work to 20 mins a night and, we aren't reading as much at the moment as she finds it easy and have been working on Numeracy / times tables for an upcoming test instead. Then she chooses a book for either me or the CD player to read.

Ginmummy1 Fri 13-May-16 10:04:41

Sounds like all’s fine with the teacher then, OP – that’s great!

Biffchipandbloodykipper – I can imagine your frustration! Maybe they’re matching the books very carefully to what they’re learning in phonics? (which, of course, makes a lot of sense for those children that are only just starting to read). When DD first started, she brought home two books: a red book with worksheet, and a separate ’reading’ book that matched her actual reading level. Maybe the school could be persuaded to do something similar, but if not, I’d be inclined to give the red books little more than a cursory glance, and just provide books for your DS from the library – while writing very clearly in the reading record what your DS has read at home, and how he got on.

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